Consultative meeting between the Disability Action Council Secretariat General and ACCESS Program Implementing Partners

Consultative meeting between the Disability Action Council Secretariat General and ACCESS Program Implementing Partners

The Australian Government through the DFAT-funded Australia-Cambodia Cooperation for Equitable Sustainable Services (ACCESS) Program is working in partnership with the Royal Government of Cambodia including the Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans, Youth and Rehabilitation (MoSVY) and ACCESS Implementing Partners (IPs) to promote disability inclusion through the implementation of the National Disability Strategic Plan (NDSP).

On 8 December 2021, through the support from the ACCESS Program, the consultative meeting between the Disability Action Council Secretariat General (DAC-SG) and ACCESS Program IPs was held and was attended by ADD International, Agile Microfinance (Agile), Cambodia Disabled People Organisation (CDPO), Chamroeun Microfinance Plc (CMP) and Good Return (GR), Humanity & Inclusion (HI), Light for the World (LFTW), UNDP and Cambodian’s Women Crisis Center (CWCC), government counterparts including the DAC and the Department of Welfare for Persons with Disabilities (DWPD) as well as the People with Disabilities Foundation (PWDF) and the ACCESS team.

The purpose of the meeting was to aimed to discuss challenges and lessons learnt and share the technical resources developed during ACCESS Stage I, as well as present key priorities for ACCESS Stage II.

A representative from each IP and the ACCESS team presented their key achievements, major challenges and lessons learnt. UNDP shared their progress on policy and legal framework development and coordination. HI shared their key achievements on rehabilitation services, while Agile, CDPO, CMP/GR and LFTW presented their progress towards the improvement of economic opportunities for persons with disabilities. ADD and CWCC also presented their achievements on and support to the intersectionality of GBV and disability.

H.E Em Chan Makara, Secretary of State of Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans, Youth and Rehabilitation (MoSVY) and the Secretary General of DAC attended the meeting. He stated that this is an extraordinary event that should be organized more often to bring government actors and development actors together to have a conversation and exchange achievements. H.E Makara added that in order to support and better the quality of life for PWDs, collective action and collaboration is needed to. Additionally, he mentioned that ACCESS has been working with the Government of Cambodia in a flexible manner to fulfil the needs of PWDs including supporting the installation of ramps and other supports for PWDs. He acknowledged the support from the Australian Government through the ACCESS Program and ACCESS IPs in supporting the disability sector in Cambodia.

Ms Anne Rouve-Khiev, ACCESS Team Leader, highlighted the key outcomes and main achievements under ACCESS Stage 1 in collaboration with the Department of Welfare for Persons with Disabilities (DWPD) and DAC. Those outcomes included the improvement of policy coordination, improvement of service provisions such as disability identification, the creation of a disability information management system and the increase of economic opportunities for PWDs. ACCESS, ACCESS IPs, DWPD and DAC have been working diligently to ensure disability inclusion across sectors.